Tips for Mold damage
In as little as 48 hours, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business when there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.
Have a Mold Problem? Call Today 1-800-SERVPRO
If you have a mold problem in your home or business, your primary focus should be safety:
- Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours.
- Mold may present a greater risk to children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory problems.
- A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.
What to Do:
- Stay out of affected areas.
- Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
- Contact a SERVPRO Franchise Professional for mold remediation services.
What NOT to Do:
- Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
- Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
- Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
- Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.
The water loss process
Extraction from an after-hours water loss
In order to be prepared for our water mitigation process please see the 4 steps below!
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals will inspect affected areas to determine the extent of the water damage and will review the inspection with you to answer any questions before beginning any work.
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals will take steps to help protect your home or business, as well as your personal belongings and other contents, from further damage by extracting the excess water and preparing the area for drying. They will explain the needed emergency services to you step-by-step.
To help ensure your home or business and belongings are dried to appropriate industry standards, a SERVPRO Franchise Professional will monitor the drying process. The updates will be consistently communicated to you.
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals will repair structural materials, reinstall carpets, and clean affected areas of your property and belongings. A Final walk-through of the job site will be conducted with you to help ensure the property was returned to preloss condition.
Understanding Black mold
Stachybotrys chartarum is the type of mold often called “black mold” or “toxic mold”. Sensational news reports warn about the dangers of black mold and these stories can be alarming and confusing. Any mold in your home should be treated with caution – stay out of affected areas and don’t touch or disturb the mold.
Please refer to our to learn more about mold and what to do until help arrives.
How Do I Tell If It’s Black Mold?
Since many types of mold can produce allergens and irritants, you should contact a qualified mold remediation company regardless of the color or type of mold. In many instances, multiple types of mold can exist in the same house or structure. If you suspect that you have a mold problem, contact a SERVPRO Franchise Professional immediately.
When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours. Consider the following mold facts:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic, float along in the air, and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
- Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce toxins harmful to humans and pets.
- Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise the mold may return.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor, and that odor can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.
Mold Remediation process
Understanding The Mold Remediation Process
Every mold damage scenario is different and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. The steps listed below illustrate the “typical” process:
The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call our National Call Center. Our representative will ask a series of questions to help us determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel.
Step 2: Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals will carefully inspect your property for visible signs of mold. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view. They use various technologies to detect mold and hidden water sources.
Step 3: Mold Containment
They use various containment procedures to prevent the spread of mold. They may use advanced containment procedures like negative air chambers to isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. All fans and heating and cooling systems will be turned off to prevent the spread of mold.
Step 4: Air Filtration
Their specialized filtration equipment allows their Professionals to capture microscopic mold spores out of the air. They utilize powerful “air scrubbers” and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in process.
Step 5: Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials
The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals use antifungal and antimicrobial treatments to eliminate mold colonies and to help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and carpeting, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.
Step 6: Cleaning Contents and Belongings
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, clothing, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. They’re also trained to remove odors and deodorization using fogging equipment.
Step 7: Restoration
Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.
SERVPRO Disaster recovery
No Job Is Too Large
The SERVPRO Commercial Large Loss Division is composed of our best of the best in restoration. Our elite large-loss specialists are prequalified and strategically positioned throughout the United States to handle any size disaster.
Every large loss is supervised by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation.
At SERVPRO, the difference is our ability to dispatch trained production professionals and cut costs through the strategic placement and oversight of temporary labor. Get the professionals, call SERVPRO.
Clients for the Commercial Large Loss program include the following:
- The Hospitality Industry
- Property Managers
- The Pentagon
Catastrophic Storm and Major Event Response
The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team can provide help whether you're dealing with a tornado, hurricane, blizzard or flood. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you. Available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, SERVPRO Franchise Professionals are prepared for the unpredictable.
With the ability to mobilize local command centers, along with the resources of more than 1,700 Franchises nationwide, no disaster is too big. Recent mobilizations of the Catastrophic Storm Response Teams include:
- 2017 California wildfires
- 2017 Hurricane Irma
- 2017 Hurricane Harvey
- 2016 Hurricane Matthew
- 2015 Carolina floods
- 2014 Polar Vortex
- 2012 Sandy
- 2010 Nashville floods
- 2008 Ike
- 2007 Chicago floods
- 2007 Ohio floods
- 2007 California wildfires
- 2005 Katrina/Wilma/Rita
Storm restoration services
Cold weather, snow, and ice storms can cause severe damage to your home or business. When these types of disasters strike, immediate action is necessary to prevent additional damage to your property. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the winter storm experience, expertise, and the resources to remediate damage caused by winter weather.
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals
Extreme cold weather can cause pipes to freeze and burst. In general, pipes are more likely to freeze when the temperature is below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. The resulting water damage can be extensive. Outdoor pipes and pipes in unheated areas of the home can freeze if they are not properly insulated or if temperatures are severely cold. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals can quickly and safely repair water damage caused by frozen pipes.
Outdoor pipes most likely to freeze include:
- Outdoor hose bibs
- Swimming pool supply lines
- Water sprinkler lines
Pipes in unheated or partially heated areas are also at risk of freezing, including:
- Crawl spaces
An ice dam is formed when snow melts unevenly on a roof and refreezes into a dam at the edge of the roof, near the eaves. This dam prevents any further snowmelt from draining off of the roof. This standing water can back up under shingles, leak into a home, and cause significant water damage to ceilings, walls, and other areas. Ice dams can also tear off gutters and loosen shingles.
Snow and ice can cause significant damage to your gutters and roof. The additional weight of snow and ice can even cause a roof to collapse. When there’s a cold snap, water can get into cracks and small spaces and expand when it freezes, causing larger cracks and more damage. The repetition of freezing and thawing cycles can cause small cracks to get larger.
Hurricane Harvey damage
SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team has been activated to help residents and business owners in storm damaged areas on the Texas coast, throughout the Houston area and in western Louisiana. SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Teams will be assisting the 121 local Franchises already located in the affected areas. SERVPRO has more than 1,000 crews ready to mobilize, with nearly 300 crews already on the ground ready assist home and business owners.
After the water begins to recede and authorities determine it is safe for residents to return to their property, there are several steps that can be taken to prevent additional damage from occurring. SERVPRO® suggests the following steps to help minimize additional damage to your property while waiting for disaster professionals to arrive.
- If the water has entered the structure through the flooding of a creek, stream or river, or if it has filtered through insulation during its intrusion, it is considered to be black water and could be hazardous to your health. Avoid contact with contaminated items as much as possible.
- Take the greatest caution while entering your home, and wear sturdy shoes and protective clothing when dealing with flooded areas.
- Do not attempt to operate any electrical equipment while standing in wet or damp locations.
- Throw away all foods—even canned goods—that have come into contact with flood waters.
- Remove and prop wet upholstery and pillow cushions for drying. Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
- If your home has a crawlspace, be aware excess moisture in this area can often foster mold growth.
SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team mobilizes from across the country, as needed, to support large storm events. SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team has responded to large loss and storm events across the country, including: 2016 Hurricane Matthew, 2016 Louisiana Flooding, 2016 Houston Flooding, 2015 Siberian Express, 2014 Mid-Atlantic Flooding, 2014 Polar Vortex, 2013 Colorado Floods, 2013 Alberta, Canada Floods, 2012 Hurricane Sandy, 2012 Hurricane Isaac, 2011 Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, 2011 North Dakota Floods, 2010 Tennessee Floods, 2010 New England Floods, 2009 California Wildfires and 2008 Hurricane Ike.
Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO Franchise System is a leader and provider of fire and water cleanup and restoration services, and mold mitigation and remediation. SERVPRO's professional services network of more than 1,700 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss events. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.
SERVPRO Emergency response
The cleanup and restoration begins with a phone call. Our national call center is fully staffed 24 hours a day and ready to dispatch the nearest SERVPRO Franchise Professionals to your home or business. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of damage.
We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today 1-800-SERVPRO
A water damage event can be traumatic and when you call, we understand you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. Our representative will lead you through a series of questions to better understand your needs.
SERVPRO specializes in water damage—in fact, SERVPRO is the premier water damage restoration company in the U.S. and Canada.
What to Expect
When you call, a call center representative will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. Armed with the details of your water event, we’ll dispatch a nearby SERVPRO Franchise Professional who will respond immediately.
Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:
- Your name and contact information
- Your insurance information (if applicable)
- The street address of the water-damaged home or business
- When did the flooding or water damage occur?
- What caused the water damage (if known)?
- Is there electricity available (on-site)?
Water damage inspection
The water damage restoration process begins with a detailed inspection of your property, including a damage assessment. The SERVPRO Franchise Professional is determining the scope of the damage so he or she can develop an appropriate plan of action.
They Identify and Stop the Water Source
They check for the source of water in your home and business and stop it. The water source must be stopped before the drying process can begin.
- Stop the Source
- Check for Contaminated Water
They Identify the Type of Water
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals must identify the category and classification of water to restore your property safely to industry specifications. The type of water contamination will affect the specific restoration processes used to restore your property.
- White / Category 1 Water
- Gray / Category 2 Water
- Black / Category 3 Water
They Survey the Extent of the Water Damage and Inspect the Premises
They inspect and test your home to discover the extent of the damage. Additionally, they will look for safety concerns and explain them to you. If you are aware of any safety issues, such as asbestos or lead, please share them.
- Survey Damage
- Complete Safety Inspection
They Move or Block Furniture
They move furniture and property contents and block items to help prevent rust or furniture stains on wet carpet.
Types of smoke
In the event of kitchen fire this holiday season, it is best to be informed on the different types of smoke, and the damage they cause.
Wet Smoke (Plastic and Rubber):
Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary, Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke (Paper and Wood):
Fast-burning, high temperatures, heat rises, therefore the smoke rises.
Protein fire Residue: (Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire)
Virtually invisible, discolors paint and varnishes, extreme pungent odors.
Fuel Oil Soot (Furnace puff backs):
While "Puff Backs" can create havoc for homeowners SERVPRO franchcise professionals can, in most cases, restore the contents and structure quickly!
Other types: (tear gas, fingerprint powder, and fire extinguisher residue.
SERVPRO franchise professionals are trained to handle even the toughest losses. If your home or business suffers fire or smoke damage, contact your local SERVPRO franchise professionals to make it "Like it never even happened".